Arnold Williams (notebuyer) wrote,
Arnold Williams


At the behest of Jordan, I have read up on the unfamiliar literature of cooperation. I can summarize the rules they come up with as follows:

1. Be nice. Start by cooperating with everyone and cooperate as long as they do.

2. Retaliate. When they don't cooperate, stop cooperating. Call them on it. Make your expectations clear. Do not withdraw socially: stay present so that your non-cooperation is obvious.

3. Forgive. When they resume cooperating, cooperate with them.

4. Non-envy. Don't keep track of anyone's score but your own.

5. Transparency. Tell everyone your strategy. Let them know what to expect.

It's a good set of rules, I'll grant you. It is the kind of thing I would be happy to teach my daughter. But it is a very limited set of rules: there are vast areas where it does not apply. An easy example of non-applicability: courtship.
Tags: joy growing up

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